Crime

Her smiling mugshot made national headlines. Here’s why she left Richland for a jail cell

Thinking of drinking and driving? A half taxi, half police car drives home that there is a choice

Hoping to reduce drunk driver deaths and injuries, a half police car, half taxi cab was on display at the Jackson County Sheriff's Office in Lee's Summit Wednesday to remind drivers they have a choice of rides when it comes to drinking and driving.
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Hoping to reduce drunk driver deaths and injuries, a half police car, half taxi cab was on display at the Jackson County Sheriff's Office in Lee's Summit Wednesday to remind drivers they have a choice of rides when it comes to drinking and driving.

Update to this story: Her smiling mugshot made national headlines, but she won’t be coming back to Tri-Cities soon

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A woman who gained nationwide attention for her smiling mugshot is back in a Florida jail after her short stay in Richland.

A Marion County judge ordered Angenette M. Welk, 45, back behind bars after reviewing medical records from treatment on Feb. 23 and 24.

Welk was back in Florida Thursday to ask if restrictions of her release could be eased so she could get medical treatment. Court records state Welk recently had a medical emergency and needed to start getting treatment.

After looking at the medical records in private, the judge decided Welk violated the terms of her release and revoked her $40,000 bond. While the court records don’t say what prompted the decision, they do reference a similar DUI manslaughter case where a man’s bond was revoked after an officer saw he was drunk.

A Marion County judge let her move across the country to Richland in November. She was ordered to wear a GPS tracking device and couldn’t leave her home except to go to work or come home. She also had to hand over her pilot’s and driver’s licenses.

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Angenette M. Welk Marion County Jail

Court and media reports didn’t say why she moved to Richland. Her Florida attorney, Stacy Youmans, made the request. Florida state prosecutors challenged it, but the judge agreed to it.

Welk made national headlines in May after she was photographed grinning for her jail booking photo following a crash that killed a 60-year-old woman.

The 18-year-old behind the wheel of the Hyundai suffered minor injuries, but her 60-year-old mother was critically injured and died days later at the Orlando Regional Medical Center.

When Welk was charged with DUI Manslaughter weeks later, her second mugshot was not as cheerful, and her latest appears more grim.

Welk latest.jpg
Marion County Sheriff's Office

She is scheduled to go to trial in May. If she is convicted, she faces a mandatory minimum prison sentence of four years and a possibility of up to 15 years, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Welk’s attorney previously told the Ocala Star Banner that her client is a good-hearted wife, mother and friend who is devastated by what happened.

Cameron Probert covers breaking news and education for the Tri-City Herald, where he tries to answer readers’ questions about why police officers and firefighters are in your neighborhood. He studied communications at Washington State University.
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